The friendly clash between France and Spain last night saw video technology being employed by the referee to make two important decisions. The audience at the Stade de France saw history in the making when two offside decisions in Spain’s 2-0 win were overturned in favor of the host, France. Antonio Griezmann scored the opener of the game in the 48th minute before it was chalked off by the video referee.
Griezmann scores but the video ref rules it out for offside! Quick turnout, surely it'll be introduced into the game pic.twitter.com/dKlME4MY15
— BeanymanSports (@BeanymanSports) March 28, 2017
The decision by the video-referee was based on the fact that Griezmann was clearly offside and so the goal was ruled out. Later in the match, Gerard Deulofeu converted a teasing pass from Jordi Alba but was interrupted in his celebration by the linesman’s flag. The decision was overturned and he recommenced his celebration after the video referral revealed the goal to be legitimate.
This isn’t the first time the cutting-edge technology has been used for decision making in a football match. It was first trailed in the FIFA World Cup last year but was mocked to a large extent. However, the once-critics-now-turned-advocates of the technology are very pleased to see the right use of this technology in Paris last night. This can be a decisive moment for the game’s future but how FIFA will implement this technology is still under process.
— Scottish Footie Kits (@ScottishKits) March 28, 2017
FIFA’s President Gianni Infantino is a big advocate of the technology and would like to see the technology employed in the next year’s World Cup in Russia. Though a final decision is yet to be made, we may see a glimpse of it in the upcoming Qualification matches.
The Football Association is also planning to use the technology in the FA Cup next season to increase the excitement since it seems to be losing interest. This won’t be the first time video technology will be used in professional football as it has already been utilized previously in the United Soccer League. In a game between New York Red Bulls II and Orlando City B, referee Ismail Elfath made two important decisions with the help of technology.
Doubts remain over the use of technology, and lots of arguments have been proposed for example how the game will start or recommence after a referral, should the referee stop the live match or when the ball is still in play and so on. Video reviews will also change the way fans celebrate in the stands. The technology will change the game forever in a positive way or suck the life out of it.
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